The UFC has won battles in the past.
All we have to do is look no further than the tale of how Zuffa came in and saved the promotion that was nearly driven into the ground by Senator John McCain and the idea that mixed martial arts was nothing more than human cockfighting. Fast forward almost seven years later and the UFC has become the driving force behind MMA’s giant growth in popularity in recent years.
Now the UFC is seemingly on top of the world. Yet they have another battle to take on.
Touch of gloves to Ryan at Fightlinker for the picture idea.
News and Notes
- Our rumors section has been updated…
- According to John Hackleman at least, Liddell is already back in the gym and planning for a return to the Octagon in December if possible:
If Chuck Liddell is contemplating retirement, his trainer and closest confidante John Hackleman is the last to hear about it.
“He’s already said he’ll be back in the gym next Monday,” said Hackleman, who has coached Liddell for 16 years. “He’s going to fight again, hopefully as soon as possible, maybe in December. We’re looking at ‘Shogun.’”
- Stash Capar of The Fight Network wrote an excellent piece yesterday detailing Joachim “Hellboy” Hansen’s decision to sit out the remainder of his current contract with Zuffa, that’s right I said Zuffa. Why? The parent company of the UFC refuses to pay him the same amount of money that he made in PRIDE:
Most mixed martial arts fighters dream of scoring a contract to fight in the Ultimate Fighting Championship, sometimes top ten lightweight Joachim “Hellboy” Hansen wants nothing more than to get out of his. The well-rounded Norwegian, the first man to beat PRIDE Fighting Championships Lightweight Champion Takanori Gomi, attended last Saturday’s Cage Rage 23 at London’s Wembley Arena to meet with Pro Elite’s Live Events president Gary Shaw, presumably to explore his options with the organization.
“I just want to fight and make enough so that I can live decently,” says Hansen. “The UFC gave me an offer in the summer, a fight with Marcus Aurelio (14-5-0). But they only wanted to pay me half the money that I was making in PRIDE. How can you say my contract is transferable, and then only offer me half of what I normally make?”
Instead of accepting the offer, Hansen says he’s opted to wait out his contract with the three months left till its completion.
- Michael Bisping has announced that his potential rematch with Matt Hamill, which was apparently scheduled for UFC 78 in November, has been postponed as Hamill is undergoing knee surgery:
The rematch between Hamill and I was being planned for Nov 27 in New Jersey. Unfortunately Hamill is unable to fight as he is having knee surgery. I am disapointed as I was really looking forward to fighting him again. That said, myself having a torn ligament in each of my knees for my last 3 fights, I can understand why he’s having it.
- IFL website editor Ben Fowlkes has joined Sam Caplan and Adam Morgan at Five Ounces of Pain.
Fightlinker: The Low Blow Episode 17
Radio Shows -
Wrestling Observer: The Truth about PRIDE and UFC
Sherdog: Sherdog’s Official Mixed Martial Arts Rankings
MMA Weekly: London Calling - The Next Step Forward
Fightlinker: Birthday Reminder: Loretta Hunt
Bloody Elbow: Kevin Iole
Sports Illustrated: Five observations
Fight Opinion: Tuesday turmoil: Mainstream media questions if Liddell was all hype and no substance
UFC: Surveying the Lay of the 205-lb Land; Jardine, Evans Poised for a Run – Lay of the 205-lb Land - Part II
FOX Sports: UFC upsets opened numerous possibilities
Just some random thoughts from this past weekend’s Pride 33: The Second Coming show.
It was a great show put on by DSE, which is great considering the amount of mismatches that most thought plagued the fight card. Stunning KO upsets (Lil’ Nog especially), an absolute war between Nick Diaz and the Fireball Kid Takanori Gomi that saw the UFC vet Diaz choke out Gomi with a gogoplata, and another highlight KO of Wanderlei Silva by Dan Henderson highlighted the event. While the production style of Pride may take some getting used to in the American market, the event was a much better representation of Pride than their first foray into the US this past October.
PRIDE 33 FULL RESULTS
Dan Henderson def. Wanderlei Silva by KO at 2:08, Round 3
Nick Diaz def. Takanori Gomi by Gogoplata at 1:46, Round 2
Mauricio “Shogun” Rua def. Alistair Overeem by TKO at 3:37, Round 1
Sergei Kharitonov def. Mike Russow by Armbar at 3:46, Round 1
Hayato “Mach” Sakurai def. Mac Danzig by TKO at 4:01, Round 2
Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou def. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira by TKO at 0:23, Round 1
James Lee def. Travis Wiuff by Guillotine Choke at 0:39, Round 1
Frank Trigg def. Kazuo Misaki by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-27)
Joachim Hansen def. Jason Ireland by Armbar at 2:33, Round 3
That being said, there are some stories out there that claim the results of Pride 33 will hurt the promotion in the long run. The first one by Zach Arnold was first printed on BoxingScene.com.
PRIDE 33 will go down as an event that, on paper, had a fight card line-up that looked like a turkey but produced some exciting fights. Short-term, the event was successful. Long-term, however, major damage was done to several of PRIDE’s key Japanese assets.
There is no turning back to Japan now for PRIDE. *Read More*
Arnold goes on to intricately detail how the surprising results will hurt Pride, especially in their stronghold of Japan itself.
A few days later, Al Yu, a Japanese columnist for MMAWeekly who specializies in covering the Far East MMA scene for the site, offered very similar setiments to Arnold. He even called it a disaster, the same as Arnold.
Operating under financial turmoil, DSE continued forward with their second U.S. show in hopes to make a further impact in a market currently dominated by the UFC. Pride 33: The Second Coming produced many exciting fights and was easily one of the best events of the year. Of the nine scheduled fights, only one went to a decision. So why was it a disaster?
What makes an organization is its stable of fighters. Pride’s large roster consists of some of the best fighters in the world. Any time a marquee fighter loses, it can have an adverse affect on an organization. In this case, four of Pride’s stars faltered on a crucial night for the Japanese organization.
There is no question that the event itself was a huge success, especially fight wise. The key will be where the PPV buy numbers end up, especially considering how poor the PPV numbers for the October event turned out. Let’s hope for the best.
Finally, for the first time ever, Pride CEO Nobuyuki Sakakibara made a comment that did not deny that Pride may be up for sale. In the past, he has always firmly denied the sales rumors. From Loretta Hunt’s article on the Fight Network…
“Maybe,” PRIDE CEO Nobuyuki Sakakibara answered of rumors that the PRIDE organization could go up for sale. “Today[‘s] show is very good [though].”
News and Notes
- UFCmania is reporting that John Halverson will make his octagon debut against Roger Huerta. Also on the card will be Terry Martin versus Jorge Rivera.
- Yoshihiro Akiyama has been suspended indefinitely by K-1 after he was caught using an oil-based substance in his fight against Kazushi Sakuraba.
- Here is what will be on ‘Inside the UFC’ this Thursday…
Rogan will sit down with UFC light heavyweight contender Rashad Evans.
He’ll talk to Randy Couture about Pros vs. Joes.
Fans will get to take a look at the UFC’s newest ring girl, Ali Sonoma.
Today Dream Stage Entertainment officially announced two more fights set to take place on Shockwave 2006.
The first fight announced was a lightweight battle between Gilbert Melendez and Tatsuya Kawajiri. Also announced was another lightweight bout which will feature Joachim Hansen and Shinya Aoki.
The card currently looks like this…
Fedor Emelianenko vs. Mark Hunt
Gilbert Melendez vs. Tatsuya Kawajiri
Joachim Hansen vs. Shinya Aoki